Abstract

Synthetic aperture radar (SAR) has been extensively used for the derivationof valuable information regarding sea ice properties and conditions. This workfocuses on the use of RADARSAT-2 ScanSAR Wide images (500×500 km swaths with50×50 meter pixels) to provide sea ice information for operations support inthe Arctic. Our developed processes generate several products that supportnavigation and operations in ice infested waters:

  • Sea ice images, i.e.delineating and mapping sea ice relative to the open water,

  • Seasonal trendcharts of sea ice over an area of interest and,

  • Automated ice featuretracking and pressure zone mapping.

Using the RADARSAT-2 dual-polarization images and automated techniques, seaice maps are generated to identify regions of open water and of sea ice. Fromthe sea ice maps, total ice concentration is derived and combined withhistorical concentration maps. The output seasonal trend charts can be used toassist in monitoring Arctic sea ice extent and sea ice identification to aidwith navigational safety operations. Finally, we develop an automated icefeature tracking that can track moving ice and from which pressure and driftzones are identified. Future work will involve the development of theprediction of movement of ice floes and packs, using the ice feature trackingtechnique as the foundation.

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